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Sunday, November 17, 2013

Brown Recluse—another example of people’s fear of nature

Once again we see that people still have out dated fears of nature’s critters. I probably have brown recluse spiders living in my house. I don’t usually kill them. If they are in an inconvenient place, I put them outside. I can’t be sure they are recluses because there are a few spiders that look like them. The only way to be sure is to check their eyes and I don’t have a big enough magnifying glass. I have found some at my father’s house, where he has a bigger magnifying glass. I have been bitten only once by these brown spiders and nothing happened at all. It may have been one of the many look-alike spiders or, as a friend said, maybe I’m naturally immune to their bite. But I respect these critters as I respect snakes in the wild. They are simply small animals that are well protected with their venom. People who spray for them probably do more damage to themselves with the chemicals than they will ever suffer from the bites of these things.
People put their faith in chemicals that may be more dangerous than the small animals they don’t trust the way most people hate snakes. As with water snakes, people often mistake them for water moccasins which are extremely rare in Kansas. The article below says a scholar asked people to send in any brown recluses and He received 1,773 specimens, from 49 states. Less than 20 percent — 324 — were brown recluses.

-សតិវ អតុ

From Wired;
It’s hard to think of a critter that inspires as much hyperbolic hysteria as the brown recluse spider. They’re pretty much universally hated. If you believe the tales, these small arachnids are biting people all day, every day, producing massive, stinking flesh-craters that require months of intensive care and perhaps a prosthetic appendage. Sometimes, it seems these spiders have nothing better to do than hunker down in dark corners throughout North America, waiting for tender human skin to present itself.
Though there are strands of truth in the hype, on the whole, it’s bunk.

It is true that some of the spider’s bites lead to necrotic skin lesions, but around 10 percent of them. The others (like the one at right), aren’t that bad. The brown recluse (Loxosceles reclusa) only lives in a few states – basically, the warmer ones between the Rockies and the Appalachians. And they don’t really want to bite you. It’s actually not that easy for them.

For more click here.

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